The cannabis industry has seen dramatic shifts since the COVID-19 pandemic forced people to stay within the confines of their homes. Businesses sit on the back burner, economies have crippled, and masks and gloves have become luxury items. However, there is one good news for the marijuana industry. Due to its essential status, a medical marijuana evaluation can help you avail of the best advice. Despite the house arrest you can purchase cannabis on a large scale. The reason why sales continue to skyrocket and it seems like people need their cannabis more than ever. Not only this, but people are still stocking up on cannabis and holding digital smoking sessions. Clearly indicating that the way we use cannabis has changed.
But it’s difficult to ignore the elephant in the room. The coronavirus cases continue to surge in the US. And we all know that the coronavirus is a respiratory illness. So, the major question is whether or not it is safe to inhale or smoke cannabis, and can a coronavirus affected patient consume cannabis? Read on to find out.
Should You Really Be Smoking Cannabis During The Pandemic?
If you are currently chilling inside your home and battling bouts of extreme anxiety and boredom. You must have cannabis on your mind. Given the fact that it has calming effects and a study published last year clearly states the fact. However, in this chaotic state of the world where everything is uncertain, it is vital to measure the potential risks cannabis can have on your lungs.
Let’s face it, lungs are the first line of defense against the coronavirus. And the talk about lung health is real. So, it’s vital to see if the relaxing properties of cannabis outweigh the potential risks posed by the coronavirus. First and foremost, we need to understand ingesting marijuana in the form of smoke and vape is not the recommended method. In fact, many mainstream doctors are of the view that marijuana smoke can irritate the lungs and cause a chronic cough. As the COVID-19 virus affects the lungs primarily, it is wise to stay away from cannabis consumption methods such as vaping and smoking. Also, it is a good time to concentrate on the immunity, physical, and mental well being.
In other words, it is the season to reach for consumption methods other than smoking and vaping. For instance, you can eat marijuana edibles instead of lighting up a bong. Or else you can simply use CBD products, tinctures, and other non-inhalable products for the safety of your lungs.
Also, whenever you feel like picking up your cannabis pen, go into the kitchen and make a cannabis-infused drink for yourself instead. It seems like a solid plan, and if you still insist on smoking, here are some concrete proofs showing why cannabis smoking is not a safe option during the pandemic.
What’s Wrong With Smoking Cannabis?
Even after easing lockdown restrictions and ongoing protests in the US, nothing has stopped the coronavirus from changing the nation into a giant prison. This means that the virus has a significant impact on everybody’s life. And we have to chalk out a plan to live with the virus until a vaccine is ready. For now, besides washing hands thoroughly, wearing a mask, and maintaining social distance, you can consume non-inhalable forms of cannabis from the comfort of your home, and here’s why.
As soon as the virus hit the nation. Several researchers and scientists started digging up information regarding the nature of the virus. Interestingly, at the same time, there was a report published in The New England Journal of Medicine. According to the report, patients with smoking history were at a larger risk of contracting the coronavirus. The study analyzed the health condition of Chinese patients affected by the COVID-19 virus. The report went on to say that patients with smoking habits were prone to severe infections in contrast to patients with no smoking history. Although factors like age and underlying medical conditions are also taken into account while measuring the risk of the virus. However, this report detected the illness caused by the virus in patients with smoking history.
Scientifically speaking, the virus has a nature that enables it to bind with the natural cannabinoids inside the human body. One such receptor is named ACE-2 and multiplies the action of the enzyme as soon as you inhale smoke. This means that if you have coronavirus smoking will cause the enzyme to accelerate the expression of the gene. Simultaneously, the virus will also spread inside the body and cause the lungs to weaken. Perhaps why you should not smoke cannabis during these uncertain times.
To gain a better perspective and to help you understand better here’s another study that talks about the side effects of regular cannabis smoking. This study showed that regular smoking is not only bad for your lungs, but it can cause other respiratory illnesses as well. These ailments include severe chronic bronchitis, airway inflammation, and a weakened immune system.
In addition, the study also revealed that the active compounds of the cannabis plant, mainly THC can suppress the immune system if consumed in the form of smoke and vape. This happens because the psychoactive compound (THC) of the plant when inhaled in the form of smoke causes a chemical reaction in the body. The reaction takes place because of the process called combustion. And during the process, a series of chemicals are released that harm the airways including respiratory tracts and lungs.
However, we cannot ignore the fact, some studies reveal the potential benefits of cannabis. Particularly, cannabidiol (CBD), the non-psychoactive component of the plant. In fact, there are several debates regarding the therapeutic benefits of marijuana. Despite that people treat a series of state qualifying conditions under the supervision of a 420 doctor. More vitally, cannabis smoking may not cause any long-term side effects, but even temporary inflammation can cause the virus to leave a devastating impact. Which brings us to the next point. Can coronavirus affected patients consume any form of cannabis?
Coronavirus Patients And Cannabis
First and foremost, cannabis does not treat the COVID-19 virus. There is no evidence regarding the same. Furthermore, If you have the symptoms of the coronavirus and you still haven’t taken a test. Here’s what can happen. As discussed earlier, smoking cannabis leads to a certain degree of inflammation or bronchitis. If you already have swollen respiratory tracts it might be quite difficult for the doctor to read your symptoms until the COVID-19 test reports arrive. After all the coronavirus is a respiratory illness and you don’t want a confounding variable to cause a delay in the treatment.
In addition to this, you are well aware of the fact that the coronavirus patients are asked to stay in isolation until the test results arrive. Not only this but given the number of people affected by the virus in the US and scarcity of medical staff, confusing variables can add an extra amount of pressure on the shoulders of the health workers. This means that you will not receive a rapid assessment and the doctor has to wait until the final test report arrives.
Also, to avoid the confusion below are a few things that you have to keep in mind.
Cough From Smoking Or The Coronavirus?
Regular smoking can lead to dry cough and irritate the airways. And it’s no hidden fact that the coronavirus also causes a dry cough. Signs of cough and irritation can show up only after a few weeks of smoking cannabis. This means that even novice cannabis smokers are not safe from the impact of the virus. More vitally, patients with chronic lung disease and those with asthmatic problems are at high risk. Worst case scenario, they can end up on ventilators to continue breathing normally.
Also, when cannabis burns in the form of smoke, it burns at a very low temperature. In comparison, cigarettes burn at a high temperature. In other words, when cannabis burns at a lower temperature, the user also consumes an unburnt form of the plant. Because of which a certain amount of irritation and swelling generates in the respiratory tract and lungs. The irritation is similar to the allergy caused by pollen grains.
This is to say that cannabis smoking can easily cause cough because they have a sensitive airway. And since cough is also one of the major symptoms of the coronavirus. You can easily confuse the symptoms with that of the virus. As a result of which the diagnosis can become more difficult. Even if you have early symptoms of the virus the doctor cannot be sure until you perform a COVID-19 test.
The virus is a respiratory illness. However, if you exercise regularly, follow necessary precautions you will be safe. Particularly cannabis smokers! They can switch to edibles, oils, sublingual strips, and other forms of consumption methods. And in case you test positive for the virus, quit smoking and stay under medical supervision.